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Sunday, November 1, 2009

Comforting colors

There's something comforting about autumn colors. They aren't the placid pastels of spring, the chilly cerulean of winter or the blaring bolds of summer.

Instead, autumn is defined by cozy, warm tones -- orange, yellow, red. Walking through the neighborhood farmer's market, it's almost sensory overload as you take in the colors, sights and sounds.

Buying apples this morning, it was nice to chat with the vendor and find out exactly where the fruit came from. There are no unknown variables but instead that knowledge that the gorgeous
Macintosh, Jonagold and Stayman apples came from a family-run farm less than 30 minutes away.

The same thing happened when buying butternut squash. I wasn't sure how to judge whether a squash is "good" or not. So... I asked. And sure enough, the woman manning the booth spent time explaining the differences between the various squash and offering cooking suggestions. It was nice to have that one-on-one interaction and walk away feeling confident in my purchases.

I've been exploring the Internet and cookbooks looking for new and inventive ways to use the squash and pumpkins -- hey, you can't let those gorgeous Halloween gourds go to waste. Pumpkin curry? Yes, please!

Plans for a long hike along the Potomac River fell through today when the skies started pouring down buckets. A rainy Sunday seems like the ideal time to bake some pumpkin bread and roast those squash.

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